BIG 12 MEDIA DAYS: Bo's Show

By at July 26, 2010 | 6:53 AM | Print


Twas a lockdown in Lincoln this summer. All business for Bo Pelini and his team, which toiled away in relative silence – yes, even by the message board standard – in preparation for fall camp, which begins Aug. 7.

Bo had time to deliver a well-received speech at a Omaha leadership conference but said no to almost every interview request, emerging for all of two minutes as NU jumped to the Big Ten. Now he kicks off Big 12 Media Days – his favorite annual event, I’m sure – where he’ll face a flurry of questions on a variety of topics from people who really, really want to know.

Not every media assignment is created equally. But this one is hanging curveball for Bo.

Head up to the podium with his vague air of irritation at the circus – can’t blame him – brush aside any questions about the Big 12 or Texas, shrug a few times, venture a joke, turn it over to the players and call it a day. Nothing to see here.

The over/under on Bo saying “We haven’t accomplished anything yet” is three. If he goes double that, I’ll buy somebody a T-bone steak cut from a Nebraska cow with Nebraska sides: Corn, cheese potatoes, a salad drowned in dressing, rhubarb cobbler.

The media will try to press him. See, NU’s the story of the league this year and you know why. It’s called the whole month of June. Bo will inevitably field questions better suited for athletic director Tom Osborne or chancellor Harvey Perlman. He’ll be asked about the “Red Out” Web site. About certain road games. About the 2009 Big 12 Championship. The national media, which swoops in for a single event and thus can fire off any rude query it pleases, will try to trigger a rise out of Nebraska’s third-year coach.

Bo’s task will be simple: Bore the heck out of them.

That’s not the sportswriter-friendly approach. But it’s the smart one.

NU hasn’t been this talented since 2001, but it’s still a fragile team, one that made crushing errors in losses to Iowa State, Texas Tech and Virginia Tech last year. It’s a young senior class. A work in progress with a quarterback race to conduct at a key crossroads in Bo’s tenure at Nebraska. However tasty the various storylines may seem, they fall flat if the Huskers can’t resolve QB and consistency questions.

The Big Ten move changed things for NU, which now benefits from keeping a lower profile more than it does “taking back the Big 12” from Texas and its southern cohorts.

Nebraska now can let the stick do the talking as it waltzes out the door. And, thus far in his tenure, Bo’s never been a coach to mind that approach.

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